Jason Stephens | March 30, 2023 | Personal Injury
If you were hurt in an accident or lost a loved one in a tragic accident in Fort Worth, Texas, you might consider filing a personal injury claim. This will allow you to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. But when should you file a personal injury claim? How do you know if a lawsuit may be necessary?
Below we explain the personal injury claim process and answer some of your frequently asked questions about it.
How To File a Personal Injury Claim in Fort Worth
Every personal injury case is different, so each case may be handled differently. However, here are the steps generally involved in the personal injury claim process:
Report the Accident
If you were hurt in a car accident, Texas law requires you to report the crash if it caused injury, death, or property damage exceeding $1,000.
If you were hurt in another type of accident, you should report it to the responsible party. For example, if you were injured in a store after you slipped and fell, report the accident to the store manager.
Seek Prompt Medical Care and Gather Evidence
It is essential to seek medical care after a personal injury accident. This can help ensure that your injuries are promptly diagnosed so you can receive the treatment you need. It can also help create evidence that links the accident and your injuries.
You should also collect other evidence proving your claim, including photos and videos, eyewitness accounts, expert witness opinions, and accident reports.
File a Claim With the Insurance Company
Most personal injury accidents are ultimately resolved through a settlement with the insurance company that covers the accident. For example, if you were hurt on someone’s property, you would file a claim with the homeowner’s insurance company. If you were hurt in a car accident, you would report the accident to the liability insurance company that covers the at-fault party.
After you notify the insurance company of the accident, it may appoint an adjuster to the case. The adjuster will conduct an investigation, which may consist of:
- Interviewing the claimant
- Examining physical damage to the vehicle
- Reviewing accident scene photos or videos
- Reviewing medical records
After the claim is reviewed, the insurance company accepts or denies the claim. If the claim is accepted, the insurance company and the claimant (or their lawyer) will enter into settlement negotiations. They may go back and forth before deciding on a final figure.
If the insurance company denies the claim or does not offer a fair settlement, the claimant may choose to file a lawsuit.
File a Personal Injury Lawsuit
If the claimant files a lawsuit, the process begins with filing a legal complaint in court. The claimant must legally serve the defendant with notice of the lawsuit. The defendant then provides a written response to the complaint.
The personal injury lawsuit process involves many steps. The parties may decide to end the case at any point and settle the case.
This process may involve:
- Discovery – The parties conduct an investigation into the claims and defenses of the other parties. This process may include mandatory medical examinations, written interrogatories, and/or depositions.
- Motion filings – The parties might file motions with the court, such as to compel evidence or to ask the court for a summary judgment.
- Settlement conferences – The court may require the parties and their respective legal teams to periodically provide updates about the status of their case and may encourage them to try to settle their case.
- Mediation – Parties sometimes engage in the mediation process with a neutral third party to resolve the case out of court.
- Trial – At trial, your lawyer will present witnesses and evidence to establish your case. The defense can also present witnesses and evidence. The judge or jury renders a verdict at the end of the case.
Most Fort Worth personal injury cases don’t make it to trial and settle before they reach that stage.
Consider Hiring a Fort Worth Personal Injury Lawyer for Help Navigating the Claim Process
A Fort Worth personal injury attorney can help guide accident victims through the claims process. They can answer any questions you have, including how to file a personal injury lawsuit and how much compensation you might be able to recover. Consider reaching out to a personal injury lawyer for help with your claim.
Contact Our Personal Injury Law Firm in Fort Worth, TX
If you’ve been injured in an accident in Fort Worth and need legal help, contact our Fort Worth personal injury lawyers at Stephens Law Personal Injury | Wrongful Death | Truck Accidents to schedule a free consultation.
Stephens Law Personal Injury | Wrongful Death | Truck Accidents
1300 S University Dr # 406
Fort Worth, TX 76107